The adoption of a common regional strategy for the development of small scale fisheries (SSF) in the Mediterranean and the Black Sea region were recommended on March 9th, 2016 in Algiers at the end of the regional conference of the General Fisheries Commission for the Mediterranean (GFCM).
In this context, the participants in the three-day allocated to this important meeting called for the establishment of a technical assistance program in favor of the least developed countries in these two regions. An approach that should be preceded by the launch of a socio-economic study to collect data to identify the precise contribution of small scale fisheries (SSF) to the economy of each country.
The recommendations also include the need to involve fishermen in the management of protected marine areas and to promote intersectoral cooperation to ensure the safeguarding and development of small scale fisheries (SSF) as a profession, but also as an activity beneficial to the country's economy. Facilitating access to bank loans was one of the points defended by the experts of the GFCM, who advocate in parallel launching public programs for financing small-scale fishermen.
According to the conference’s participants, the adoption of regulations ensuring better management of protected marine areas and the creation of small scale fisheries cooperatives are important elements. The participants called also for further improvement of socioeconomic conditions of fishermen to better contribute to the economies of their respective countries. Furthermore, it was recommended to actively work to safeguard the traditional skills proven to be naturally respectful of the environment. To be even closer to the reality of small scale fishermen, it was advised to take appropriate actions to maintain permanent contact between members of the GFCM and fishing communities across the countries of the Mediterranean and Black Sea. Encourage women to invest in the field of small scale fisheries is also one of the wishes expressed by the GFCM’ members.
At the opening session of this international meeting, the Minister of Agriculture, Rural Development and Fisheries, Mr Sid Ahmed Ferroukhi, stressed that "the role of small scale fisheries in terms of job creation, livelihoods of small scale fisheries communities, to open up areas along the Algerian coast and contribution to local development, has made this event one of the most important sector development priorities.”